San Diego Business Journal

Applied Proteomics Moves Headquarters to Torrey Pines, Hires Inaugural CEO

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Applied Proteomics Inc., an emerging diagnostics company focused on protein analysis, said Feb. 7 that it relocated its corporate headquarters to San Diego from Glendale and appointed veteran diagnostic developer Peter Klemm as its first CEO.

The 16-person company also said it has secured $22.5 million in Series B financing from a consortium of investors including Domain Associates, Vulcan Capital and returning angel investors.

The funding, which closed in June 2011 but wasn’t made public until now, will go toward the development new diagnostics that analyze the body’s proteins to pinpoint disease at an early stage, the company said in a Feb. 7 statement.

This new round comes on top of $4 million of Series A financing that closed in 2007, the year the company was founded, Klemm said.

API is working on tests that analyze proteins found in a blood sample to spot early signs of conditions ranging from colon cancer to appendicitis, Klemm said. Proteins perform most cellular functions and are the targets of most drugs and therapies, making them the most powerful source of information to understand the health status of a patient, he said.

“For the first time, we can look at all the proteins in the body with remarkable specificity and sensitivity and use proteomic technology to create superior diagnostics that can ‘listen to the conversation of the body,’ ” said API co-founder and Director Daniel Hillis, in a statement.

Until now, the company has been led by Hillis — chairman and chief technology officer of Glendale-based research and development company Applied Minds LLC — and its other co-founder David Agus, a doctor who works at the USC-Keck School of Medicine.

Klemm said that he accepted the CEO post because API has the right combination of “great leadership, great investors and great technology.”

Klemm also serves chairman of Redwood City-based cancer test company Pathwork Diagnostics Inc. He was previously president and CEO of Predictive Biosciences in Lexington, Mass., and CEO of GeneOhm Sciences Inc., a San Diego company acquired in 2006 by Becton, Dickinson & Co. of Franklin Lakes, N.J.

API left Glendale for the Torrey Pines area of San Diego because of the healthy biotech “ecosystem” here and easy recruiting, Klemm said.

— Kelly Quigley